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Kames Hydro Project starts generating

21st April 2015

We are delighted to announce that the Kames Hydro Project started generating in April.

The 900kW project is located on land managed by Forestry Commission Scotland on the south shore of Loch Awe, Argyll, Western Scotland. It is the first of a number of projects currently under construction on the National Forest Estate.

Planning permission and the SEPA water-use license were received in late 2013. After a detailed procurement and financial close process, construction started in earnest in May 2014.

Commenting on the project, Fraser Allison of Gilkes Energy said: "The Kames Hydro project is a classic high-head, run-of-river design incorporating a single intake, high-pressure pipeline and Pelton turbine in a purpose built powerhouse. It is the first project from the development initiative we have been working on with FCS over the last five years. As the first FCS project to start generating this is considered a milestone. We are very pleased to have delivered this project on time, so securing the current Feed-In-Tariff, and within budget. The project has contributed to the local economy and employment, and sensitively uses nature's own resources to make another small but significant step towards a low carbon energy industry. Thanks to all who contributed to this project, especially the close cooperation of FCS, SEPA, SNH, the local planning authority and the local community who have worked with us to enable this project to be built on time. I'm also pleased to hear that the Community Benefit payments from this project have unlocked further funding which has allowed a major broadband upgrade project in the area to proceed."

David Jardine, Forestry Commission Scotland added: "We are very pleased that the National Forest Estate is playing its part in hosting the generation of clean and renewable energy. A key part of these energy developments is to ensure that local communities also benefit and it looks like the community benefit payment for this specific scheme will go to good use." 

The photograph above shows the 900kW Pelton turbine and generator package which was supplied by Gilkes Energy's parent company Gilbert Gilkes & Gordon.

Click here for more information on the project including photographs of both the construction phase and finished project.